Six On Saturday: Reasons to be cheerful

After a deluge of rain this morning there is a patch of blue sky to be seen. I’ll enjoy it while I can. This week’s six comes from Thursday’s garden when the sun shone for most of the day and the clear sky of the evening revealed a waxing silver sliver of a three day old moon. It was a good day and there was much to appreciate.

Although the sun shone, the garden was very wet and an hour of pruning the roses and tidying up the alchemilla mollis led to cold wet hands. I chose my six for the week and headed inside again. Here’s what I found to cheer me.


Raindrops on the euphorbia characias. I hope this Mediterranean plant copes with all the rain. I have lost two over the years but there always seems to be a self seeder to move into the gap.


I inherited quite a few these and have dug most of them out as they were very large and dominated one particular corner of the garden. I kept a few and this one is just going over into winter browness but for the moment the yellowing leaves look rather good. What is it? I have no idea, could it be a dryopteris?


The low sun was shining through the hedge at the back of the garden and the silvery seed heads of the thalictrum took on a seasonal sparkle.


Oh so wet, but it was a joy to see the new buds of hellebore ‘Pretty Ellen’ red. Moments later the leaves had been trimmed back ready for the flowers to have free rein.


A glistening mix of ivy and arum italicum that colonise the inhospitable ground under the snowberry.


An anonymous free gift. Was it from the birds or the wind? Another form of euphorbia but not one that I have planted in the garden. Neighbouring gardens both have substantial euphorbias so maybe it’s one of theirs. I am letting it stay so time will tell.

It was also cheering to see, as reported by other SOSers, the emerging shoots of spring bulbs. There are a few months to go but things are on the move, spring is being prepared.

For more gardening cheer pop along to Mr P’s, the whole jolly band of SOSers gather there over the weekend to exchange bon mots, support, encouragement and no doubt seasonal good wishes. Wishing all of you peace, health and happiness and see you in the New Year.

23 thoughts on “Six On Saturday: Reasons to be cheerful

  1. Euphorbias are always very pretty with rain droplets or the morning dew. Your photos are very successful. I don’t know what the last variety is but it does look like an euphorbe, you’re right.
    I wish you a merry Christmas to you and all your family

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  2. I love your first photo of the euphorbias, fabulous and glistening. I put in two E. characias Silver Edge this autumn, can’t wait to see what they do. The fern looks very much like my Shuttlecock ferns, Matteuccia struthiopteris, but I could be wrong as ferns can look so similar. I love their fresh green colour in spring (mine look rather brown and manky at the moment).

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  3. Some of those euphorbs can be prolific! They are too pretty to completely remove though. I keep thinking that if I keep a few that landed in the right place, they will not be a problem. So far, they have not taken over. Nonetheless, I must pull out quite a bit of it.

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  4. Could the ferns be the Male Fern – Dryopteris felix mas? If so I inherited lots of those too. Thanks for sharing your lovely sunny photos and have a wonderful Christmas.

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    • Jim also thinks felix-mas. With two such expert opinions I’m calling it. I dug out so many, I’m down to this large one in a border and three or four under a giant rhododendron. Wishing you a great Christmas too.


  5. Six uplifting photos, especially the first with the raindrops on the leaves of the euphorbia. There’s a magical quality to it, the way the sun is making the raindrops sparkle.

    Liked by 1 person

    • The arum is a very gothic plant but it puts a bit of ground cover into a terrible corner of the garden. It hasn’t spread at all and, be careful what you wish for, I wish it would do a bit more. It works well with ivy for a Victorian graveyard look!

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  6. Six is Euphorbia mellifera, a fabulous plant if you have plenty of space. Grow it as hard as you can or it will get big, lush and open. I planted a pot of seedlings of that arum this year and am wondering if I’ve done the right thing. The male ferns are a very tricky group, several very similar species, it’ll be one of them, most likely Dryopteris filix-mas. Nice to see a bit of sun, it’s been in short supply lately.

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    • Thanks so much for the id. I can see from the neighbours’ plants that they get pretty big. I may have to move a few things around! My arum has been there for many years – inherited – and is hasn’t got any bigger, but it truly is an inhospitable spot and if it did spread a bit it would be doing me a favour. Sadly we are back to endless rain here.


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